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427 Ratings

The Seashell and the Clergyman

La coquille et le clergyman

Directed by Germaine Dulac
France, 1928
Short, Avant-Garde, Fantasy


Obsessed with a general’s woman, a clergyman has strange visions of death and lust, struggling against his own eroticism.

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The Seashell and the Clergyman Directed by Germaine Dulac
Drenched with hyperpoetic imagery and a fierce spirit of experimentation, the film is marked by animated heads cracked open before our eyes. Reality slips away as our focus is blurred and corrupted, and dancers swirl and twirl in an almost violent, nightmarish frenzy.
December 05, 2018
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Through an exploration of feminist themes supported by experimental filmmaking techniques, Dulac put the issue of gender at the forefront of her film, narratively, formally, and through her own role as director. Her work demonstrated the potential of Artaud’s later theories on cruelty, in a manner tied intrinsically to the gender politics of her film.
July 28, 2017
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The Seashell and the Clergyman (1928), a crucial early work of surrealist cinema, assails the hypocrisies of the church and the military through potent symbols and the slippery logic and chronology of dreams.
September 20, 2016
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